Brian May recalls dedicating a song to Eric Clapton: “I think he hated it!”

The Queen guitarist dedicated Blues Breaker – from his 1983 Star Fleet Project mini album – to Clapton.

Eric Clapton and Brian May of Queen

Image: Samir Hussein / Christie Goodwin / Getty Images

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Queen guitarist Brian May has opened up about a song he once dedicated to Eric Clapton, saying the blues legend probably “hated” the track.

Titled Blues Breaker, the song was released as part of May’s 1983 Star Fleet Project mini album. The guitarist – who’s celebrating the 40th anniversary of that record with a brand new box set – tells Cleveland that there’s a good chance Clapton was not a fan of the song.

“I think he hated it! [Laughs] But that’s OK,” May says. “He’s entitled. He can do what he wants. I mean, Eric could do anything and he’ll still be our hero. That’s the way it is.”

He adds: “There’s probably lots of things I disagree with Eric about, but that doesn’t change anything. He’s been one of the greatest influences, inspirations of my life, and that’ll never change.”

“I always get goosebumps if I get to be anywhere near him. When I’m playing with him, the couple of times I’ve done it, it’s a wonderful moment, experience.”

Elsewhere in the chat, May speaks about Eddie Van Halen’s guitar work on the album, and how he’d gotten the late guitar legend on board the project.

“Ed I knew as a friend but I’d very seldom had a chance to hang out with him,” May said. “I got very drunk with him one night, very ill-advisedly…but that’s another story. With Ed, I set him up. I wanted to hear what happened when you put Ed as a firework on a stage and lit the blue-touch paper and stood back to see what happens.”

“I gave him that stage in the middle of the [Star Fleet] song; that to me was the climax of the whole song, the bit where Ed steps forward and does his own thing, unfettered by anything. He steps in and it comes out completely out of his head – that’s not an overdub, he just does it. Every time he does it it’s different, ‘cause his brain’s constantly creating new stuff, which to me is one of the great joys of the [box set]. I love to hear the different versions of what he came up with. What an extraordinary, extraordinary player he was, just incredible.”

Arriving 14 July, the Star Fleet Project reissue will feature every single track recorded during the original sessions – outtakes included.

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